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12-year-old boy dies after drowning at Illinois Beach State Park near Zion

The Dead River at Illinois Beach State Park. | Photo provided by the Illinois Beach State Park.

A 12-year-old boy who was pulled from the water at Illinois Beach State Park last weekend has died, the medical examiner said.

The Beach Park Fire Department and Illinois Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police Department responded around 4:20 p.m. July 5 to the Illinois Beach State Park, 1 Lake Front Drive in unincorporated Zion.

A 12-year-old boy was pulled from the Dead River on the far south end of the park. The boy was unconscious and not breathing.

Paramedics and firefighters used an ATV to get to the difficult to access location. An ambulance transported the boy to Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office said that the boy was transferred to Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago for further treatment.

The boy, identified as Seth Schultz, died on Wednesday around 10:58 a.m., the medical examiner’s office said.

An autopsy confirmed he died of drowning and his death was ruled an accident.

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Schultz was the first of two drowning victims at the state park on July 5. A 27-year-old man was rescued from Lake Michigan at the state park’s beach less than an hour after Schultz was rescued.

The 27-year-old Waukegan resident was approximately 100 feet from shore and in distress.

Several witnesses reported that a bystander at the scene used a drone to help locate the victim in the water.

A Good Samaritan swam to the man and brought him back to shore. Sheriff’s deputies conducted CPR and used an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) in an attempt to revive him.

Paramedics arrived and transported the 27-year-old man to Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan where he was pronounced dead.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police is conducting an investigation into both deaths.

A spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources had no comment regarding the drowning of the 12-year-old boy.


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